Okay. The Cavaliers just lost to the Kings at home. But surely they can beat the Bobcats, right? Eh, I wouldn't be so sure.
When? 7:00 PM Eastern
Where? Time Warner Cable Arena -- Charlotte, NC
Where on my eyeballs? Fox Sports Ohio / NBA League Pass
Enemy/brother blog? Rufus on Fire
Will Anderson Varejao play tonight? Nope. And neither will Daniel Gibson.
Tickets? Cleveland Cavaliers tickets
Okay, so the Cavaliers should beat the Bobcats right? Or else everybody on this blog is going to lose their minds? Well, let me tell you why that's not necessarily the reasonable reaction. First of all, the Cavs are the underdog in this game -- according to Vegas. The Bobcats are a 1.5-point favorite and the Cavs are without their two main veterans. With neither Varejao nor Boobie traveling to Charlotte, the Cavs are rolling with a bunch of really young players and lack any true veteran presence on the court. As much as we have mocked the concept of "veteran leadership" in the past years, I do think it makes some difference. The Cavs often go through those stretches that frequently plague young teams. They commit dumb turnovers and have defensive breakdowns when the pressure amps up.
Furthermore, this team just isn't good. I know that isn't a very brilliant observation, but the point is that the Cavs can't really be expected to win any game. Unfortunately, that even includes games against the Bobcats. As much as I'd like to say that there are teams that the Cavs should "take care of business" against, they just aren't at that point. Kyrie Irving can singlehandedly takeover games against some teams, but the rest of the offense and the entire defense is so bad, that it just isn't a reasonable expectation. I have made the mistake of expecting the Cavs to beat teams like the Kings and Raptors. They just aren't at that point yet. Consider this: most of these teams probably come into games against the Cavs expecting a chance to get a rare win as well.
I've been on vacation for the past couple of days, but I'm back now. And I'm actually excited to watch the Cavs and this really should be a competitive game. While I'd love a blowout, I'd settle for a win. A win would do a lot to help the Cavs get this thing going in the remaining portions of the season. Byron Scott has said that they're disappointed but not discouraged. He harped on the idea that it takes a while to learn how to win and I think we're definitely seeing that. The Cavs lead the league in losses by 3 points or less. If we were to come up with some New Years resolutions for the Cavs, it would certainly involve becoming better at closing out games. Much of this comes with experience and, although you probably hate to hear it, we just need to be patient.
I don't have much analysis about tonight's game in particular. Except that I know Sam is going to have an awesome time watching Byron Mullens tonight.
Oh and I'm excited to watch Michael Kidd-Gilchrist.
Fear the Sword's Fearless Prediction:
I'll predict a win, but I'm not confident about it. Cavs win 100-95.